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AI to change health, child safety

AI to change health, child safety
Delegates during the second day of Artelligence Forum 2019. - Photo by Dhes Handumon

Rohma Sadaqat

Published: Thu 5 Sep 2019, 11:10 PM

Last updated: Fri 6 Sep 2019, 1:16 AM

Artificial intelligence (AI) will be the launchpad to improving the quality of healthcare and the safety of vulnerable children around the world, experts at the Artelligence  - The Artificial Intelligence Forum said on Thursday.
Speaking in a session on the final day of the event, Richard Vdovjak, principal scientist for data science and AI at Royal Philips, noted that a lot of industries stand to benefit from AI.
"We are just beginning to scratch the surface of what is possible," he said. "One aspect that we haven't even started exploring properly yet is AI and how it is overlapping in different disciplines."
One sector that stands to gain a lot from the advancements in technology is the healthcare sector, he said. "Health is a global issue, yet, we continue to see an increase in challenges. By 2020, chronic diseases will account for almost 75 per cent of all deaths worldwide. By 2035, there will be a global deficit of about 12.9 million skilled health professionals.
Clinicians, he noted, have never had access to more data, but at the same time, it has never been harder for them to process all that data. "They have too much data and too little time."
"Healthcare professionals have yet to unlock the full potential of AI, as few are using AI in areas with near-term value such as virtual nursing assistance, preliminary diagnosis and automated image diagnosis. A recent study by Accenture noted that if healthcare professionals were open to leveraging AI's full capabilities, then key clinical health AI applications can potentially create $150 billion in annual savings for the US healthcare economy by 2026," he said.
In his presentation, Faisal Mohammad AlShimmari, founder and chairman of the Emirates Child Protection Association, touched upon using AI to ensure the safety of children in the UAE. He highlighted how AI can be used to create a system that identifies and alerts authorities to children that are at risk.
"The system will rely on data and data analysis to help us determine how at risk a child is," he explained. "A rating system will be created that collects instances of abuse and puts them on a scale. Once the number goes beyond a certain level, we will immediately be notified and relevant parties will physically reach out and visit the child to determine what the next course of action should be."
He added: "With more data, we can mature the algorithm and reduce the number of false positives. The aim is to reach a point where no child in the UAE will ever be harmed."
Artelligence - the Artificial Intelligence Forum, was hosted by Khaleej Times in partnership with MIT Sloan Management Review GCC. AI experts from the UAE and abroad from the public and private sectors attended the forum.
- rohma@khaleejtimes.com

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